Grassley Emboldened as Biden EPA Backs Ethanol in HollyFrontier Supreme Court Waiver Case

Longtime ethanol backer and Iowa U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley says he’s encouraged the Biden EPA is siding with the ethanol industry in a case that goes before the Supreme Court later this month.

The ethanol industry and the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals say the Environmental Protection Agency can only grant ethanol waivers to oil refiners who got them continuously in prior years.

Refiners HollyFrontier and CVR Energy argue Congress intended exemptions should be available for application “at any time.”

Senior Finance panel member and former chairman Chuck Grassley helped write the RFS law and is leaving it up to the Supreme Court to interpret it, but adds “I am emboldened by, first of all, a Republican EPA person saying he was going to abide by the 10th Circuit, and then, when it came to a new administration, they were going to defend it before the Supreme Court.”

The ‘gap year’ waivers case testing statutory intent comes before the high court on April 27.

Grassley meantime, says the president needs to get ethanol vehicles into any infrastructure plan, not just electric ones as half of new sales by 2025.

“And then, all cars by 2035, and then, at 2035, you wouldn’t have any ethanol industry. Number two, would be, we ought to learn a lesson from the freeze in Texas, when you can’t get electricity. What are you going to do when you can’t charge your car?  You going to sit in a snow bank, after the battery runs down?”

Grassley says it makes more sense to include alternative and conventional fuels in any energy plan to reduce carbon emissions, which he claims are the lowest in decades, while China, India and others continue to pollute.